Atatürk Cultural Centre
Maurice Béjart, one of the world-renown choreographers, and his troupe Béjart Ballet came to Istanbul with the sponsorship of HSBC Private Bank in order to perform three special performances as part of the International Year of Rumi 2007. With the media sponsorship of NTV and Radikal, Béjart Ballet performed on June 15,16 and 17 at the Ataturk Cultural Centre as part of IKSV's 35. Anniversary celebrations.
The choreography titled Rumi:Prayer and Dance was specially designed by Maurice Béjart for the International Year of Rumi 2007 and had its world premiere in Istanbul.
Throughout his art career, which he started as a dancer and continued as a choreographer, Maurice Béjart has choreographed more than 250 works. Maurice Béjar received his classical dance education from prominent teachers such as Madame Egorova, Madame Rousanne and Léo Staats, and later had choreography training in London. He was widely acclaimed as a choreograph with The Rite of Spring staged in 1959 for Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie. Maurice Béjart, who also staged theatre plays and operas, directed feature films as well. In his professional career of more than 60 years Maurice Béjart won numerous awards including Theatre des Nations Choreography Grand Prize, Praemium Imperiale Award from the Japanese Art Association and Kyoto Prize.
Béjart Ballet came to Istanbul in 1988 as part of the 16. International Istanbul Music Festival and was highly appreciated by the Istanbul audience for the works they performed.